Agenda item


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At the request of the Chair, the Applicant’s representative, Mr Paul Byatt presented the case on behalf of the Applicant.  He acknowledged the history of the premises, but explained that the new owner had a positive approach to running the business and had invested a lot in the shop.


The Applicant and the Shop Manager were also present at the Hearing and Mr Byatt provided details of their previous experience in the retail industry.


The Applicant’s Representative clarified that the new applicant had no links to the previous owners of the premises except for in their dealings in the sale of the premises and evidence was available to support this.  Reference was also made to Temporary Event Notices which had been applied for, whilst waiting for this application to be considered.  It was noted that the Temporary Event Notices had not been used.


Information was provided on the CCTV and refusals register and the Applicant’s Representative responded to the concerns raised by the Police relating to incorrect addresses and explained that this was a typo.  He also made reference to the allegations from Norfolk Constabulary about the purchase of illegal cigarettes and explained that the premises had CCTV from the day of the allegation and the Shop Manager confirmed that she had not sold any illegal cigarettes.  He commented that the Police had not followed up this allegation and no body cam footage was available from the Police.


The Sub-Committee was informed that visits from the Police and Norfolk Trading Standards had been carried out and there were no concerns raised.


The Applicant’s Representative stated that Mr Khider would support the Shop Manager and could be easily contacted and attend the premises as necessary.  He commented that they worked as a very strong team and would run the shop successfully.


The Chair invited questions from all parties and in response to questions from the Licensing Officer, the Shop Manager provided information of previous licensed premises she had worked at in King’s Lynn and the Applicant’s Representative confirmed that Mr Khider had owned the lease on the premises since October 2021.


The Licensing Officer asked about a Company which had been set up on Companies House in September 2021 and then dissolved which registered Mr Khider as Director for 122 London Road.  The Applicant’s Representative explained that he did not know why this Company had been dissolved.


The Licensing Officer asked the Shop Manager if any cigarettes were sold at the premises and the Shop Manager confirmed that they were not.  They sold Vapes.  She explained that they often got asked by customers for alcohol and cigarettes and she would explain to customers that they did not sell those products.


A page from the refusals register was circulated to all parties at the Hearing.


In response to a question, it was explained that the premises did not have a food safety certificate, but would get one if required.  It was also highlighted that the visit from Norfolk County Council Trading Standards had not flagged this up.


Chris Brooks asked questions about the typo of address on the application form and the Applicant’s Representative clarified the error and confirmed the correct address.  The Applicant showed Chris Brooks his driving licence, which had the correct address and Chris Brooks highlighted that the Applicants surname was spelt differently on the licence to the application.  The Applicant’s Representative explained that this was no attempt to deceive any parties and any errors were a genuine oversight.


In response to a question from Councillor Rust, the Licensing Officer explained that it was a legal requirement to have a food safety certificate.  In response to further questions the Shop Manager confirmed that she was paid minimum wage and could provide evidence of her payslips.


Councillor Rust made reference to the lack of footage from the Police from the incident on 29th March relating to the purchase of illegal cigarettes.  Chris Brooks explained that the footage had not been downloaded from the body cam and was now unavailable.  The Shop Manager commented that she was working at the premises on that day and that the sale had not happened.  She commented that if the Police had genuine concerns, they would have conducted a search of the premises.


In response to further questions, the Applicants Representative explained that the Temporary Event Notices which had been applied for had not been pursued, so there had not been any alcohol sales since the licence had been revoked.  The Applicant’s representative also confirmed that there were no links to the previous owners and Business Rates had been transferred.


Mr Khider explained that this was his first shop, and he could travel to the shop from his home in Peterborough as and when required.


The Shop Manager explained how she dealt with people who looked underage and how she recorded details on the refusals register.  She explained that if the Licence was granted, staffing arrangements would be reviewed.  The Applicant’s Representative also commented that the Applicant had committed to invest in training for the Shop Manager, including getting her a Personal Licence.  Steps would also be taken to ensure the correct Food Safety Certificate was in place.


The Applicant’s Representative confirmed that the payment of Business Rates had been transferred to Mr Khider’s name and the whole business was in his name.